I must dedicate this Silent Hill review to From Earth who wrote hilarious Let’s Play of it. Without his LPs I doubt I would have become as interested in the Franchise as I am.
Were you scared? Yes.
How can you be scared of a PS1 game? The graphics don’t make this game scary, but pretty much everything else does.
I played Silent Hill to prove I could play a scary game without crying or crapping myself. I succeeded. I shaked and my palms sweated but I succeeded.
Here’s the summary of my experience with the game via Twitter:
I'll have you know that I was playing Silent Hill last night – didn't scream or cry at all. Only died about 4 times in the first 10 minutes.
— Emma Barnes (@ejbarnes89) March 13, 2013
Reasoning: I found the controls of this game really clunky and difficult to get used to. I’m used to a game where if you push left, the character moves to YOUR left. In Silent Hill, Harry (the protagonist) will move to his left. It’s also been a while since I’ve played a game that involves combat – it took me a few attempts to be able to kill these guys (first enemies in the game).
There was a scary noise in Silent Hill. I got scared and stopped playing.
— Emma Barnes (@ejbarnes89) March 15, 2013
Scary Noises were the main reason I wanted to scream and cry while playing this game. As you can see, the graphics aren’t scary. However, you get a radio that emits static whenever a monster approaches. And some rooms just make scary noises to freak you out. The music involves lots of clanking and scary noises and honestly, well done to the sound guys because that’s the primary reason I had to stop playing – scary noise, can’t go on.
So, now we are in the "other" world in Silent Hill and I can't play for more than 10-15 minutes at a time. Awesome.
— Emma Barnes (@ejbarnes89) March 31, 2013
Ah, the famous “Otherworld”. When the sirens blared, that meant that Silent Hill was about to turn from creepy foggy ghost town into horrific, rust and blood covered nightmare town. It’s about 10 times scarier! The worst level for me wasn’t a “level” it was just navigating the town when it had turned to the “Otherworld” – enemies were stronger, there was a lot more blocking your path and there was about 10 times the scary noises!
So, beat my first boss in Silent Hill. Not sure how, I was mostly running away and firing at random.
— Emma Barnes (@ejbarnes89) May 8, 2013
Bosses in Silent Hill were difficult for me because I just sucked so much at the combat. This is the first boss by the way, a giant dick monster. When it opens its mouth it sucks you in and kills you in one hit. Oh yeah and it looks like a vagina on the inside.
Fine Harry, get killed by zombie nurses, see what I care. (code for: I'm lost in Silent Hill's hospital and don't know what to do).
— Emma Barnes (@ejbarnes89) May 19, 2013
Oh yes, if there was more than one monster around I’d probably die. For me, the scariest parts of the game were the parts I didn’t have a map for. I wanted to cry.
However, the nurse/doctor enemies were the least scary and probably the easiest to hit.
How I play Silent Hill: Find key item/do a puzzle – run back to save point so I don't have to do it again.
— Emma Barnes (@ejbarnes89) May 24, 2013
Seriously – at the end of the game it tells you your time and how many times you saved. I saved on average… once every 3 minutes. I am a wuss!
There was a scary bit in Silent Hill and I had to stop. I am a wuss.
— Emma Barnes (@ejbarnes89) June 1, 2013
Yep. This is what happened: I went into a shopping mall in the “Otherworld” and my radio was making noise – I was trying to find the monster, and go up an escalator and BOOM, this happens
Basically: All the TVs in the room suddenly turn on and there’s Harry’s lost daughter….
My brain wants me to play Silent Hill. My eyes are saying "It's dark outside".
— Emma Barnes (@ejbarnes89) June 1, 2013
Uh, don’t know why this ever happened. I was scared. Here’s a picture of a Pyramid Head cosplayer in the fog. (He’s not in this game).
Silent Hill update: Obligatory Sewer Level! Running low on health and ammo nooo
— Emma Barnes (@ejbarnes89) June 3, 2013
Sewer levels!? Of course! Dark, dank, creepy – but not as creepy as most of the other levels, and you’re mostly running in a straight line.
For the first time EVER I've stopped playing Silent Hill – not because I'm scared but because I'm stuck on a puzzle! (G/F figured it out)
— Emma Barnes (@ejbarnes89) June 6, 2013
Silent Hill has a fair few puzzles – and they are quite hard. Many are “find object, put object here, unlock thing, progress” but I remember one from quite early on in the game which was “guess which piano keys to press” based on a poem. There is a lot of reading base puzzles in subsequent games, but this one isn’t so bad for it.
The puzzle I was stuck on was this:
Essentially you had some astrology based tiles, and you had to choose a number based on the picture you were shown. The Astrology gimmick was irrelevant – it was just the number of legs the picture had. The Libra one… I think it’s there to throw you off…
Hooray I managed to play Silent Hill all the way through! Gamer Cred!
— Emma Barnes (@ejbarnes89) June 7, 2013
I was so proud when I finished this game. Even if I got the worst ending possible. That is, Harry dies and the events of the game are a dying dream (he crashes his car right at the start).
In the end, I’m happy I played it – the story is interesting and messed up. I did actually feel for the characters – Harry, who has lost his daughter and is going through hell to find her (and is eventually forced to kill her), Cybil, the police officer who isn’t involved in any of the strange goings on and ends up possessed (and if you don’t find a certain item, you have to kill her) and Lisa, a nurse who you only meet in the “Otherworld” who realises towards the end that she’s actually been possessed the whole time.
The rest of the characters are jerks though. However, even if I did stumble upon this:
I’d be glad, because it’s another person, as opposed to well…
And finding a locked door was always great because it meant that was one less room to explore!
How do the rest of you get on with scary games?